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Designing Web Audio & CD-ROM by Dylan Thede, Josh Beggs

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Chapter 11. Designing Audio Web Sites with Beatnik

With its Rich Music Format (RMF), Beatnik is an active player in the future of interactive web audio. The Beatnik format generates compact file sizes that rival those of MIDI. Beatnik’s advantages are its ability for intelligent interactivity with JavaScript, its standard set of instrument sounds for consistent playback across all platforms, and its Beatnik Editor for adding custom digital audio samples and instrument banks. Beatnik’s interactive capabilities combined with its high music quality and small file sizes make it ideal for full-scale advanced sound design on the Web. Examples of web sites that have been “sonified” using the Beatnik System are shown in Figure 11-1. To hear a sample of RMF and the Beatnik System, visit the Beatnik web site at http://www.beatnik.com.

Examples of sonified sites by Young & Rubicam (left) and 7-UP (center and right)

Figure 11-1. Examples of sonified sites by Young & Rubicam (left) and 7-UP (center and right)

Beatnik Inc., a company co-founded by music legend Thomas Dolby Robertson under the moniker Headspace, developed the RMF format. Beatnik is significant because it’s the first format that gives web audio producers the tools to create full-scale, high-quality interactive web soundtracks and the platform to deliver the music over limited bandwidths. Even though high-quality streaming audio has existed for a number of years, the interactive aspect has been absent. Other popular ...

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